Disney Channel launches new comedy series ‘Bizaardvark’

'Bizaardvark' cast has just the right emojis to describe each other

Madison Hu, Olivia Rodrigo and Jake Paul star in Disney Channel’s new comedy series “Bizaardvark.”
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Madison Hu, Olivia Rodrigo and Jake Paul star in Disney Channel’s new comedy series “Bizaardvark.”

Madison Hu and Olivia Rodrigo didn’t know each other a year ago.

But, OMG, today they are BFFs who LOL for each other and that’s QFT.

Madison’s a Texas native who had a recurring role on the Disney Channel series “Best Friends Whenever,” while Olivia is a California girl whose first job was in an Old Navy commercial.

What brought them together and created the tight friendship is “Bizaardvark.” That sounds like a new breakfast cereal or a disease you get from eating ants, but its actually a new series on the Disney Channel.

Madison and Olivia play friends who write and perform funny songs they share on the internet. Once they hit 10,000 subscribers, the girls earn the opportunity to work from a creative studio space that they hope will take their videos to the next level.

The pair didn’t work together during the initial auditions, but once they got to the tryouts for the studio, they were paired and a friendship was born.

“Our scene went really, really well,” Madison says before Olivia joins in to say how much they could tell the pairing was really working.

They are seated in Madison’s dressing room near the massive soundstage where the series is being filmed. The show’s design looks like the inside of a tech geek’s head. They continue to talk over each other as if they were one person.

“After the studio test, we started talking more. We started texting. And, I knew she was going to be a very good friend of mine,” Madison says.

They’ve condensed what it takes most people years to accomplish in forming a tight friendship. They spend all their free time together.

That bond helps in “Bizaardvark,” which relies heavily on the comedic timing of the girls. Both credit their mothers for giving them a good sense of humor. The fast-paced nature of the show only works if the stars come across as two people who can finish each other’s sentences.

Because of the nature of the show created by Kyle Stegina and Josh Lehrman, there are no limits to what the show can tackle.

One episode has the girls involved in a grudge match with a super scary MMA fighter.

“We get to be able to meet different people and play different scenarios. I think it’s awesome that we don’t have a limited show,” Madison says.

“Bizaardvark” is the latest series to embrace the world of social media. It seems natural to the actors, who have never known a world without Twitter, Facebook and other social media.

Both are excited about how the social media for “Bizaardvark” continues to grow as they near the Friday, June 24, launch date.

Olivia says the people don’t understand that young people aren’t addicted to their phones: “They are addicted to their friends,” Madison says.

Social media makes it easy to find out about the young stars. You can learn that Madison fell in love with acting when she was seven and a few years later landed her first acting role as a spelling bee contestant in “Bad Words.” There are also ways to find out that Olivia began taking singing and acting classes when she was six. Her love for performing continued to grow and she soon landed top roles in several school plays as well as regional musical theater.

There’s one bit of information about Olivia that might seem like more urban legend than fact. It’s true that Olivia still writes letters.

“My great-grandma lives far, far away. I drew a picture for her when I was really little and I wanted to send it to her and I wrote a letter on the back,” Olivia says. “She wrote me back. Now, I write to all my friends and family.”

At the top of that friends list is Madison.

“Bizaardvark,” which also stars Jake Paul, DeVore Ledridge and Ethan Wacker, debuts after the original Disney Channel movie, “Adventures in Babysitting.”

Rick Bentley: 559-441-6355, @RickBentley1


  • 9:45 p.m. Friday, June 24, Disney Channel